Bayesian thinking for toddler & Bayesian probabilities for babies [book reviews]

Posted in Statistics with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2023 by xi'an

My friend E.-J.  Wagenmakers sent me a copy of Bayesian Thinking for Toddlers, “a must-have for any toddler with even a passing interest in Ockham’s razor and the prequential principle.” E.-J. wrote the story and Viktor Beekman (of thesis’ cover fame!) drew the illustrations. The book can be read for free on https://psyarxiv.com/w5vbp/, but not purchased as publishers were not interested and self-publishing was not available at a high enough quality level. Hence, in the end, 200 copies were made as JASP material, with me being the happy owner of one of these. The story follows two young girls competing for dinosaur expertise, and being rewarded by cookies, in proportion to the probability of providing the correct answer to two dinosaur questions. Toddlers may get less enthusiastic than grown-ups about the message, but they will love the drawings (and the questions if they are into dinosaurs).

This reminded me of the Bayesian probabilities for babies book, by Chris Ferrie, which details the computation of the probability that a cookie contains candy when the first bite holds none. It is more genuinely intended for young kids, in shape and design, as can be checked on a YouTube video, with an hypothetical population of cookies (with and without candy) being the proxy for the prior distribution. I hope no baby will be traumatised from being exposed too early to the notions of prior and posterior. Only data can tell, twenty years from now, if the book induced a spike or a collapse in the proportion of Bayesian statisticians!

[Disclaimer about potential self-plagiarism: this post or an edited version will potentially appear in my Books Review section in CHANCE.

conditional confusion [X validated]

Posted in Statistics with tags , on January 23, 2023 by xi'an

continuously tough [screenshots]

Posted in Books, Kids, Statistics, University life with tags , , , , , on December 27, 2022 by xi'an

As I was looking to a pointer on continuous random variables for an X validated question, I came across those two “definitions”…

stuck exchange

Posted in Books, Kids, Statistics with tags , , , , , , , on August 16, 2022 by xi'an

Made an attempt at explaining on X validated why simulating from the joint was equivalent to simulating from the marginal then from the conditional. Unfortunately failed as I could not fathom where the OP’s difficulty was. It seems it started at defining what drawing from a distribution meant… Then someone came by asking why I was writing the exponential in this unusual way (this was a barred E for expectation) and whether or not the “thin hollow rectangle” (a barred I for indicator) was standing for identity, that is

$\mathbb E\quad\text{and}\quad \mathbb I$

Reaching a point of incomprehension from which I could not recover…

Amy in Randomland [book review]

Posted in Statistics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2022 by xi'an